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New Post 9/26/2008 9:17 AM
User is offline webwyse
2 posts
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ISEB Business Anaysis Diploma 

Hi folks

Has anyone done ISEB's diploma in business analysis. I am planning to sit certification exams in next couple on months, depending on the availability of exam dates. However, im planning not to take any training course but prepare for the exams by myself. Just wondering how tough is it if I do it on my own. If anyone generous enough to share their notes/training material that would be greatly appreciated.

Many thanks. Rahil

 
New Post 9/29/2008 3:43 AM
User is offline Guy Beauchamp
257 posts
www.smart-ba.com
5th Level Poster




Re: ISEB Business Anaysis Diploma 

Rahil,

 

As you probably know the ISEB Diploma in Business Analysis is part of BCS and consists of 4 certificates and 1 oral exam.

The 4 certificates are:

1. Requirements Engineering

2. Business Analysis essentials

3. Organisational Context

4. Modeling Business Processes (this is one of a small set of certificates you can chose for the fourth certificate but seems the most relevant).

These exams have to be taken with an exam provider as ISEB themselves no longer offer public exams. The exam providers are usually training organisations and while some may offer the facility for you to just take the exam a word of warning: the exams are all structured as scenarios and half a dozen or so questions designed to get you to DO business analysis on the scenario. As the training companies have written these exam papers and marking schemes (which have to be sanctioned by ISEB) they are inevitably using the terminology and style of the training organisation who wrote it. The upshot is that unless you approach BA in the same way that the training orgainisation that wrote the exam teaches it, you may struggle.

I can send you a couple of ISEB style questions (made up and not sanctioned by ISEB) and will happily mark it and explain to you the rationale for the marking (I have written and marked ISEB exam papers). Alternatively there are practice papers on the BCS website which have the marking schemes with them.

You will need to know formal concepts of, defintions for and how to apply techniques to model and elicit Objectives, Requirements (General, Business, Functional, Non-Functional, Technical, Detailed), process models, data models, business activity models, stragetic and organisational analysis, and a whole load of technical terms and concepts such as knowledge types, project approaches, the SDLC and BAs contribution to it and so on. There are books I can suggest on some of this if you want and BCS will suggest them as well.

The oral exam must be taken with ISEB themselves and is a 45-ish minute discussion on a project you did Business Analysis on to demonstrate your in depth application of the tools and techniques.

Hope some of the above helps.

I would be keen to know WHY you want to take the exams and your expactations for the benefits of having the Diploma...

Guy

 
New Post 9/29/2008 9:27 AM
User is offline webwyse
2 posts
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Re: ISEB Business Anaysis Diploma 

Thanks Guy

Your post is very helpful. I forgot to mention in my last post that I have already compeleted one of the certificates, Requirements Engineering, with one of the training providers. My experience of that exam was that, it was very easy, may be again due to the fact which you have mentioned that since the exam paper is written by the training providers themselves therefore they structure the training course accordingly. 

Each training course costs atleast £1000, which is not affordable at all. I have spoken to one of the training providers and they are charging £100 + vat for exam only. Therefore I am going with exam only option now. That is why I want to know if anyone could provide me with their training material.

Why am i doing it? because i am a graduate business analyst and would like to get some certification to add to my professional qualifications. My expectations are 1. learn new concepts 2. confirm if i am currently doing anything wrong and if there is any better way of doing things 3. career building etc. 

 
New Post 9/30/2008 2:15 AM
User is offline Guy Beauchamp
257 posts
www.smart-ba.com
5th Level Poster




Re: ISEB Business Anaysis Diploma 

Rahil,

£1000 per exam is a lot! Try Business Analyst Solutions advanced course for all 3 other certificates for £1800+VAT.

My comments on your reasons for doing the ISEB Diploma:

1. learn new concepts - well you can just buy the books or read up on it or (of course!) try my solution which is to progress through a structured programme using your current project as the case study.

2. confirm if i am currently doing anything wrong and if there is any better way of doing things - if the projects you are defining change requirements for use the products of your analysis to develope sucessful solutions you are not doing anything wrong. You do what you need to do in order to do the analysis and if the BA methods and approaches and theories don't support you in that there is something wrong with them, not the way you are working!

3. career building etc. - I have yet to see any jobs demand ISEB qualifications as mandatory and only a few as desired. Far better for your CV I suggest are testimonials from previous positions and examples (made anonymous so you don't break commercial confidentiality) of your previous analystical work. Of course, the Diploma may enhance your reputation or be used to justify a pay increase where you are...

As a BA I would recommend that you analyse your own career as a project: define the problems you seek to address or goals to achieve, your objectives and the resulting requirements. Further details are in this article "So you want to be a Business Analyst" - the article is written for people who are planning on entering the field but works equally well for someone reviewing their own career.

Hope this helps.

Guy

 
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